Rooney laments one that got away - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Rooney laments one that got away

By Laine Clark 26/05/2005 06:04:16 PM Comments (0)

Controversy is never far from State of Origin - but that was no consolation for NSW winger Luke Rooney as he rued referee Paul Simpkins' decision to deny what he believed was a match-turning try against Queensland.

With NSW trailing 13-0, Penrith's towering winger thought he had opened his try-scoring account for the night after carrying two Maroons defenders near the line in the 44th minute at Brisbane.

After replays proved inconclusive, video referee Graeme West sent it back down to whistleblower Simpkins who promptly ruled "held up" - to Rooney's surprise.

To compound matters, West had given the green light to Queensland debutant winger Ty Williams' 21st minute try despite replays showing the ball may have been knocked on earlier by fullback Billy Slater.

Trailing 19-0 after 48 minutes, NSW still fought back thanks to a 52nd minute Rooney try to lead 20-19 in the 71st.

But a Johnathan Thurston field goal and a golden point intercept try to Matt Bowen sealed the Maroons' 24-20 victory.

The 192cm Rooney, 22, believed the Blues could have at least drawn the match with what he believed was legitimate try early in the second half with the game in the balance.

"I thought it was a try. I thought I got it down, but that's the way it goes sometimes," he said.

"I can just remember having a bit of the ball on the line - but what can you do?"

After the match NSW coach Ricky Stuart said he believed the Rooney verdict should have been the same as Slater's controversial "hand of God" try.

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